October 5, 2008

One of my friends at work stopped by my office last Friday. She’s one of the many people who have been good to us since we returned empty-armed from Portland, and I thanked her for this. And as she was standing in my office doorway, the strangeness of the moment seemed to hit both of us at the same time. She looked at me and we nearly cried right there, in the middle of the day, under the fluorescent lights.

In some ways it’s a relief when this happens. It hasn’t been even two months since we lost Teddy, but I have grown accustomed to carrying my grief around, to bearing with it. Most of the time I no longer fight it. Even when I curl up crying at night (not every night now – why am I ambivalent about that?), I do it with resignation. At work I shut and lock the door when I have to, and I guess I’ll get used to doing this as the next few months unfold. It doesn’t feel like a big deal and, as it turns out, I can get quite a lot of work done through my tears.

When someone else who knows my story or who hears it cries or comes close to crying, I cry, too. And sometimes there comes this horrifying and almost dream-like moment when I realize all over again that I had a beautiful little boy and that he died. But I can see in these moments that I’m not weak or pathetic or crazy. I get so used to carrying my grief around that I sometimes forget this. I can see in the faces of others that being without Teddy truly is a terrible thing, an awful and nearly unthinkable thing. And then I can be a bit kinder to myself, because I’m not a madwoman. Because of course it’s hard, living with this.


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